wow, last week at this time I was at the newspaper in New London finishing up my last night as weekend photo editor. this sunday marks the end of one of my hardest weeks of my life. i got home monday and they released my dad from the hospital on tues. i took him over to the care home i arranged for him after we left the hospital. wed. morning at 6am he calls me saying i have to come pick him up right now because he could not spend another moment in another institution. the first night obviously did not go well. i guess there was some noisiness on the part of the staff at the shift change which pissed him off. plus he said he could hear someone down the hall moaning. so i am now a full time caregiver. the first 24 hours was the scariest. i had no idea what i was doing and i guess i still don’t. i didn’t sleep much that night because i kept going to check on him, swearing i heard him fall. he was asleep in bed everytime i went to look. i’m going to rhode island next weekend for 4 days so he knows he has to stay there while i’m gone. since wed, i’ve had him there almost everyday for a shower and for a 4-6 hour stay with hope that easing into it will make it seem less a big deal. i’m probably kidding myself because i know he will hate every moment of it.
he keeps trying to do things the way he has always done. not launching himself forward with the walker at a crazy 45 degree angle has been a tough concept to get through to him. his blood pressure still plummets when he gets up so he has to stand for a few moments before moving to let things level out a bit which he doesn’t always remember to do. today he had two dizzy spells but so far (knock on wood) hasn’t lost his balance. i have to get him dressed in the morning and poach his egg just right. i have to listen to him bitch about bush or the asinine commercials that he seems to feel forced to watch on t.v. but i think this is the fastest way to some sort of recovery. i’m not sure what is going to happen to my father over the next weeks and months. i hope he can come to connecticut for the wedding. the doctor said that he thought it would be ok. he would just need to get up from time to time.
i just wish he would brighten his attitude about everything. the reason he hates the care home so much, which by the way is not nearly as traumatic as he makes it seem, is that he sees a bunch of old ladies waiting to die and he sees himself in the same position. i try to tell him that this place is not going to be his future. it is a place that will keep him safe until he can get back on his feet again. i actually like all the ladies there and they like him quite a bit, but he won’t interact with them much. there is one lady there that definitely has alzheimers but she knows it. our first evening there she kept repeating that her husband owned the feed and seed store and did dad know him. finally after the 10th time the store came up dad said, oh you were just saying that. she apologized and said she didn’t mean to repeat herself all the time it just happens that way sometimes. dad says well that’s ok i thought maybe you had more than one husband that worked at the feed and seed store. she laughed and said no, just the one, and that’s all she could handle. so he could be charming if he wanted to. my mom had an uncle bill who was in his 90’s and would say when he got depressed he would go down to the nursing home and help out the old people. i wish dad would help out the old people instead of dwelling so much on how he was one too.